The Best Telescopes in 2018 – Bird Watching, Sports, and Astronomy

The Best Telescopes in 2017 - Bird Watching, Sports, and Astronomy

Astronomy, birdwatching, and sports are popular outdoor activities among men and women. However, to enjoy them on demand, you need a few special tools, which are readily available online. If you spend many days camping outdoors, for instance, one of the best pop up tents will keep you safe. They are easy to use. They also protect people from the elements well. You also need a quality telescope. The panoramic views that such accessories offer keep people well entertained outdoors.

Do you struggle to watch birds whenever you are spending time outdoors? To get close up images of your targets without straining your eyes, buy one of our recommended telescopes. These are powerful items. They offer good results in most environments. They are also portable, easy to set up, and made of quality components that last for years.

Check Price
  • Aperture
  • Focal Length
  • Tripod
  • Weight
Celestron 127EQ
Celestron 127EQ
  • Aperture127mm
  • Focal Length1000mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight21.4Ibs
Orion 09007
Orion 09007
  • Aperture130mm
  • Focal Length650mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight24.2Ibs
MI Infinity 50mm
MI Infinity 50mm
  • Aperture50mm
  • Focal Length600mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight2.9Ibs
Celestron NexStar
Celestron NexStar
  • Aperture203mm
  • Focal Length2032mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight4.0Ibs
MI Infinity 102mm
MI Infinity 102mm
  • Aperture102mm
  • Focal Length600mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight20.2Ibs
Check Price
  • Aperture
  • Focal Length
  • Tripod
  • Weight
Orion 10015
Orion 10015
  • Aperture114mm
  • Focal Length450mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight13.0Ibs
BARSKA Star
BARSKA Starwatcher
  • Aperture70mm
  • Focal Length400mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight3.9Ibs
Vivitar TEL50600
Vivitar TEL50600
  • Aperture50mm
  • Focal Length600mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight4.9Ibs
Celestron NexStar
Celestron NexStar
  • Aperture102mm
  • Focal Length1325mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight30.0Ibs
Orion 9024
Orion 9024
  • Aperture90mm
  • Focal Length910mm
  • TripodYes
  • Weight31.9Ibs

1. Celestron 127EQ PowerSeeker

Celestron 127EQ PowerSeekerBinoculars improve the vision of people outdoors. However, for the best experience, buy a telescope. They are powerful. They also come in a myriad of designs that satisfy the needs of most people. Whether you enjoy bird watching or astronomy, for instance, the PowerSeeker 127EQ from Celestron will not let you down. Fitted with a durable 3X Barrow lens, it is one of the most powerful brands on the market. Whilst in use, you will get clear shots or your targets effortlessly. Its large aperture (127mm) boosts its performance further. Order yours.

The focal length of a telescope mirrors the distance from which you can focus objects clearly. Most low powered brands often disappoint their users outdoors. This is not the case with the Celestron 127EQ PowerSeeker. The fully coated glass components (optical) that it has have a high transmission range (1000mm). At most distances, most of its users get clear and bright images without exerting a lot of effort.

With this product, birdwatching for long is a fun exercise. Although powerful, for instance, it has a lightweight design. Traveling with it is a piece of cake. The sturdy aluminum tripod that it has is also one of a kind. It is stable. It also secures it well on flat platforms such as tables, which is admirable. This way, you can use it for long without straining your arms or back.

Our Verdict

Telescopes such as the Celestron 127EQ PowerSeeker have improved how people entertain outdoors. Its portable design is appealing. It also has a durable design with clear multi-coated optics that improves the quality of the images people get. You will enjoy using one whilst birdwatching.

Pros
  • Powerful (3X) Barrow lens
  • Multi-coated lens optics
  • Sturdy aluminum tripod
  • High transmission range (1000mm)
  • Bright and clear images
  • Portable design (compact)
Cons
  • Flimsy tripod mount

2. Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST

Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130STReflector telescopes are powerful accessories that improve how people entertain outdoors. If you are tired of the blurry images that your binoculars display, we have found a better product for you. Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST is a top-of-the-line aperture reflector telescope that you will enjoy using. Attainable in black, it is an eye-catching product. The large 5.1-inch aperture that it has is also one of a kind. Whilst in use, it gathers ample light, which improves the quality of the images that it displays. Whether you enjoy looking at the moon or birds, this product will serve you well.

During birdwatching trips, people travel for long distances in search of rare species. To ease such trips, look for a light telescope such as Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST from the Internet. Its short optical tube design (24 inches) is not only compact but also portable. Most people can travel with an original one with ease. Its fast focal ratio (f/5), on the other hand, offers a wide field of view, which people like.

You do not have to carry this telescope for long whenever you are exploring the outdoors. In addition to its weight (27 pounds), you will like the sturdy equatorial telescope (EQ-2) that it comes with. It has an adjustable design. As such, you can use this telescope from many elevations without issues. The tripod also supports slow-motion tracking of objects (celestial) that migrate across the sky. You will enjoy using one.

Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST comes with everything that you will need to have successful outdoor escapades. In addition to the telescope and tripod, you get Sirius Plossl eyepieces (25mm and 10mm) that work well outdoors. You also get a pinion focuser rack (1.25 inches) and an astronomy software (Starry Night) that supports most computers.

Our Verdict

Orion 09007 is a powerful short tube telescope that you can travel with effortlessly. It focuses images well. Its fast focal ratio and large aperture design (5.1 inches) are laudable, while its quality parts last for long.

Pros
  • Large 5.1-inch aperture
  • Portable short-tube design
  • Fast focal ratio (f/5)
  • Portable optical tube design
  • High-quality components
Cons
  • None

3. Meade Instruments Infinity 50mm AZ

Meade Instruments Infinity 50mm AZTelescopes make the lives of birdwatchers fun. Furthermore, both experienced and novice astronomers find them fun to use indoors and outdoors. For the best results, however, look for a versatile brand that works well in most settings. Meade Instruments Infinity 50mm AZ is such a product. In terms of performance, it stands out from the crowd. The 50mm aperture that it has, for instance, is large and functional. It delivers bright and clear images in most settings. It also has a fast focus ratio (f/12) and an acceptable 600mm focal length.

Whilst in use, positioning this telescope is a breeze. Because of its lightweight design, for instance, most people can move it around with ease. Some brands are not only frustrating to set up but also strain the hands and back whilst in use. The sturdy Altazimuth mount that you get is also one of a kind. It secures this tripod well for easy pointing.

With Meade Instruments Infinity, you can view most types of objects from different distances. The high (4mm), medium (12mm), and low (20mm) magnification eyepieces that you get deliver excellent results. Paired with the 2X Barrow lens that this telescope comes with, you enjoy a high magnification power devoid of the eyepiece you are using.

Meade Instruments Infinity’s all-in-one design features a powerful optical viewfinder that boosts its performance. In most settings, you can easily point its scope at objects you are planning to focus. People like this.

Our Verdict

Meade Instruments Infinity 50mm AZ has what both professional and novice astronomers want. It is a powerful product. Its versatility and ease of use are also notable attributes. It makes exploration of celestial objects fun.

Pros
  • Three magnifying lenses
  • Powerful barrow lens (2X)
  • Large aperture (50mm)
  • Compact and portable design
  • Free astronomy software
Cons
  • None

4. Celestron NexStar 8 SE Telescope

Celestron NexStar 8 SE TelescopeRanked among the most beloved brands of telescopes in 2018, Celestron has many quality products. Recommended for armature astronomy, for instance, Celestron NexStar 8 SE has an iconic orange tube design. It is eye-catching. It also has a plethora of novel features that make the stargazing experience of people memorable. Its 8-inch aperture, for instance, gathers light better than its competitors do. Whenever you are viewing far objects such as planets and moons, therefore, you will get spectacular views always.

You do not require extensive astronomical skills and or experience to use this product. People of all cadres (including students) can use it on demand without issues. The fully automated GoTo mount that it has, for instance, is one of a kind. It responds efficiently. Using its celestial database, it can also locate and track over 40,000 objects for you.

Do you have a complex telescope that you struggle to use on a day-to-day basis? Celestron NexStar 8 SE offers better results for many reasons. Fitted with an advanced SkyAlign technology, for instance, its set up and operation are easy. At home or outdoors, you can set up this telescope in minutes. The technology also aligns it with your target fast without your intervention. Expect the best experience from it.

Like most telescopes that we have reviewed, this is a travel-worthy product. The sturdy tripod that it comes with, for instance, breaks down into small pieces for easy transportation. Its lightweight and compact design is also ideal. You will not have an issue traveling with it.

Our Verdict

Buy Celestron NexStar 8 SE to get a charming orange themed telescope with a feature-rich design. Its large aperture design focuses most far objects clearly. It also has a SkyAlign technology that aligns it with over 40,000 objects in its database. You will enjoy using a new one at home.

Pros
  • Detailed Celestial database
  • Fully automated GoTo mount
  • Lare aperture (8 inches)
  • Easy to set up and operate
Cons
  • Poor instructional manual

5. Meade Instruments Infinity 102mm AZ

Meade Instruments Infinity 102mm AZ Whilst shopping online, most people think that the largest refractor telescopes are often the best. This is not always the case. For the best indoor and outdoor experience, look for a quality product that will satisfy your needs. Meade Instruments Infinity 102mm AZ is such a product. Even though its 4-inch aperture (120mm) is small, you do not sacrifice quality in any way. It focuses object well. Its fast focus ratio (f/5.9) and length (600mm) boost its performance further. This is a good telescope.

If you are looking for a powerful telescope that can track objects well, this is a suitable brand. The quality Altazimuth mount that it comes with has a panhandle that eases its operation. You can adjust its angles easily, for instance, which is invaluable. The slow motion controls that it has, on the other hand, improve precision tracking. During the day or at night, therefore, expect memorable results from this refractor telescope.

No matter the viewing situations that you encounter indoors and or outdoors, this telescope will serve you well. Its three magnification eyepieces (low, medium, and high) support most viewing situations. Using its Barrow lens (2X); you can easily double the power of these eyepieces, which is invaluable. They make activities such as astronomy fun.

Our Verdict

Astronomy is a fun career and hobby that millions of people enjoy. If you struggle to locate your points of interest often, replace your low powered telescope with this one. Image rendering is fast and clear. You also get a durable product with interchangeable eyepieces and slow motion controls for precision tracking. A new one will not let you down.

Pros
  • Interchangeable eyepieces
  • Supports precision tracking
  • Powerful Barrow lens (2X)
  • Quality Altazimuth mount
  • Renders high-quality images
Cons
  • None

6. Orion 10015 StarBlast 4.5 Astro

Orion 10015 StarBlast 4.5 AstroIf you enjoy astronomy, a quality telescope will improve how you focus known or suspect objects. Many brands claim to have good products. However, the Orion brand is not only reputable but also has feature-rich products that satisfy the needs of most people. The 10015 StarBlast 4.5 Astro is one of them. If you are looking for a grab-and-go telescope for use outdoors, a new one will serve you well. Its compact design is portable. Its feature-rich design, on the other hand, benefits both intermediate and entry-level astronomy enthusiasts.

Devoid of its size, buying a telescope that cannot focus images well is a poor decision. Look for a versatile brand such as Orion 10015 StarBlast 4.5 Astro instead to have a good time outdoors. This is a portable telescope. In terms of performance, its premium design satisfies the needs of most people. Its large aperture (4.5 inches) and fast focus ration (f/4), for instance, provide bright and detailed views of objects. These include planets, the moon, and wide-field celestial objects such as nebulas.

Out of the box, this telescope ships assembled and ready to operate. In minutes, you can set it up in your backyard or room without using special tools. Its smooth altazimuth base eases tracking of objects, while the low thermal borosilicate glass use to make it lasts for long.

Each package has an eyepiece kit (two Explorer II 1.25 inches). You also get a reflex sight (EZ Finder II) for aiming and an Astronomy software (Starry Night) with a detailed database. Do not hesitate to buy.

Our Verdict

Orion 10015 StarBlast 4.5 Astro is a versatile grab-and-go telescope that generates bright and detailed images. This is a durable product. Aiming it is easy, while the versatile eyepiece kit on offer satisfies the needs of most people.

Pros
  • Bright and detailed views
  • Versatile eyepiece kit
  • Smooth altazimuth base
  • Compact grab-and-go design
Cons
  • Little to no instructions

7. BARSKA Starwatcher

BARSKA StarwatcherBecause of their stripped-down designs, most entry-level telescopes often disappoint people. Fortunately, quality ones are readily available on the Internet as well. BARSKA Starwatcher, for instance, is a top-rated product that delivers memorable results. Its power (300x) and focal length (400mm), for instance, is desirable. For an entry-level telescope, the quality of the images that it generates outdoors is laudable.

Avoid the cheap telescopes that generate dark or blurry images while in use. If you are in an astronomy class or just like tracking celestial objects, such products often disappoint people. Look for a quality brand such as BARSKA Starwatcher instead. The coated glass optics that it has is admirable. It boosts the brightness of its images without compromising their structure or blurring features. The 3X Barlow lenses and interchangeable eyepiece that it has boost its performance further.

With BARSKA Starwatcher, you get all mandatory accessories for setting up a functional system at home. The Deepsky Astronomy software that you get, for instance, is novel. Even though designed for beginners, you will enjoy using it with your Mac or Windows computer. You also get an adjustable tripod for precision tracking and a carry case for easy transportation. If you travel often, this telescope will serve you well.

In terms of cost, BARSKA Starwatcher is a pocket-friendly product. The fact that you cannot afford an expensive professional telescope does not mean you sacrifice your hobby. This one even has a lifetime warranty (limited).

Our Verdict

BARSKA Starwatcher is a beginner’s telescope. It is easy to set up. The eyepiece, lens, and tripod that it comes with boost its performance. However, if you are a professional, do not expect much from this item. Some of its cheap plastic parts are annoying.

Pros
  • Deepsky Astronomy software
  • Protective carrying case
  • Adjustable three-leg tripod
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Coated glass optics
  • Powerful lens and eyepiece
Cons
  • Cheap plastic parts

8. Vivitar TEL50600 60X/120X

Vivitar TEL50600 60X/120XMany reputable telescopes are attainable in stores such as Amazon. Unfortunately, most of them are expensive. Some have bulky and or cumbersome designs that frustrate people. For an enjoyable indoor and outdoor experience, look for a versatile brand such as Vivitar TEL50600 60X/120X instead. The 120X and 60X eyepiece that it comes with are powerful. Focusing far objects is never an issue with this item. The 3X Finder Scope that it has boosts the performance of people further, which is laudable. With one, you will locate celestial objects with ease.

Recommended for kids aged 8 years and up, this is a suitable tripod for recreation or education. If your son or daughter is in astronomy class, he or she will love this product. It is easy to set up. The detailed instructions it comes with ease this process. The components used to make it, on the other hand, are durable. They can withstand the abuse that kids dish out to such products.

To focus and view objects using telescopes, your hand should be as stable as possible. Unfortunately, the tiny hands of kids have an issue holding bulky telescopes. This impairs quality. With Vivitar TEL50600 60X/120X, however, expect good results. Its lightweight and compact design is easy to use. It also comes with a sturdy full-size tripod that works well on most flat surfaces. Once set up, you can make precise adjustments and focus targets better, as a result.

Our Verdict

With Vivitar TEL50600 60X/120X, do not expect one of those professional-grade telescopes scientists use in labs. For beginners and kids, however, it is a functional product. Its interchangeable eyepieces magnify targets well without compromising their clarity. The adjustable tripod and powerful finder scope that it has (3X) boost its functionality further.

Pros
  • Free five-piece cleaning kit
  • Sturdy full-size tripod
  • Powerful finder scope (3X)
  • Interchangeable eyepiece (120X and 60X)
Cons
  • Eyepieces scratch easily

9. Celestron NexStar 4 SE

Celestron NexStar 4 SECelestron’s iconic orange telescopes are among the most sought-after all over the world. They are eye-catching. Their versatile designs, on the other hand, are not only perfect for stargazing, but also bird watching. This NexStar 4 SE model offers these benefits. By optimizing light gathering, for instance, its 4-inch aperture delivers impressive views of celestial objects. You can also use it to watch the moon and deep sky formations on demand and clearly.

With this telescope, you will never struggle to focus and identify your targets. Like most Celestron telescopes, it has a SkyAlign technology that handles the forgoing efficiently. At night, for instance, you can align up to three bright objects for deep review. Beginners and pros like this.

Do you have a problem finding where Jupiter is whenever you are gazing at the sky at home? Forget about buying the maps or using the tricks that some people share on YouTube. Buy this telescope instead. Its automated GoTo mount allows for precise tracking of celestial objects. You also get a detailed database with over 40,000 points of interest.

Celestron NexStar 4 SE is a durable telescope. Over time, you do not have to worry about its lenses scratching or parts falling apart. Made of aluminum, its tube and adjustable tripod are also one of a kind. They do not break and or degrade as easily as some cheap ones do.

Our Verdict

This telescope makes watching celestial objects such as stars fun. Even though compact, its power is amazing. It also has a portable design that you can set up easily at home. Celestron NexStar 4 SE is suitable for people of all cadres.

Pros
  • Compact and portable
  • Adjustable aluminum tripod
  • Detailed celestial database
  • Large (4-inches) aperture
  • Automated GoTo mount
Cons
  • Slow focus speed (f/13)

10. Orion 9024 AstroView 90mm Equatorial

Orion 9024 AstroView 90mm EquatorialBuy Orion 9024 AstroView to get a powerful refractor microscope at a jaw-dropping price. Even though cheap, you will like its large (3.5 inches) aperture. Whilst in use, it delivers crisp views of deep-sky objects during the day and at night. Its high focal length (910mm) boosts its functionality further.

Because of their weight, holding telescopes for long is a chore for most people. They strain the arms and shoulders. Sudden movements, on the other hand, compromise accuracy. This frustrates people in the end. Fortunately, with Orion 9024 AstroView, these are non-issues. Each telescope that you buy has an adjustable EQ-2 tripod that works well on most surfaces. The tripod also has a slow-motion equatorial mount for manual celestial tracking.

Off the shelf, Orion 9024 AstroView comes with two Sirius Plossl eyepieces (25mm and 10mm). These work well. You can also interchange them on demand to deliver your desired results. The finder scope (6×30), pinon focuser, and Starry Night software that you get are also ideal.

Our Verdict

Orion 9024 AstroView, even though cheap, is a decent telescope. Its parts are durable. The crisp views of distant objects that it delivers, on the other hand, makes it ideal for learning and or recreational use.

Pros
  • Large (3.5 inches) aperture
  • High focal length (910mm)
  • Adjustable EQ-2 tripod
  • Slow-motion equatorial mount
  • Finder scope (6×30)
Cons
  • Slight wobble

Tips for Choosing the Best Telescopes

Performance: People use telescopes to watch far celestial objects or birds. Buying a low-powered brand that generates blurry images, thus, is a poor decision. Check the performance of your preferred brand before buying. Make sure that it has a large aperture. Brands with powerful lenses and high focus lengths are also ideal. Look for one.

Quality: Check the structure of your preferred telescope before spending money. Does it have a plastic or aluminum tube? Plastic is light. However, to get a telescope that is both light and durable, look for one made of aluminum. Parts such as lenses and finder scopes should also have durable designs.

Add-Ons: Does your telescope of choice have a tripod? Does it have a finder scope or a cleaning cloth that you can use on demand? These are vital items. For good results, look for a product with as many add-ons as possible.

Conclusion: Do you have a child in an astronomy class? Are you looking for a powerful telescope that you can use to view far objects? Our top 10 picks are the best in 2018. Made using quality materials, they are durable. You will also appreciate their performance, their cost, and their ease of use.

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